CHAPTER XXIX

" Henry dear-----" was her greeting.

He had finished his breakfast, and was beginning the Times. His sister-in-law was packing. She knelt by him and took the paper from him, feeling that it was unusually heavy and thick. Then, putting her face where it had been, she looked up in his eyes.

" Henry dear, look at me. No, I won't have you shirking. Look at me. There. That's all."

"You're referring to last evening," he said huskily. "I have released you from your engagement. I could find excuses, but I won't. No, I won't. A thousand times no. I'm a bad lot, and must be left at that."

Expelled from his old fortress, Mr. Wilcox was building a new one. He could no longer appear respectable to her, so he defended himself instead in a lurid past. It was not true repentance.

"Leave it where you will, boy. It's not going to trouble us: I know what I'm talking about, and it will make no difference."

"No difference?" he inquired. "No difference, when you find that I am not the fellow you thought?" He was annoyed with Miss Schlegel here. He would have preferred her to be prostrated by the blow, or even to rage. Against the tide of his sin flowed the feeling that she was not altogether womanly. Her eyes gazed too straight; they had read books that are suitable for men only. And though he had dreaded a scene, and though she had determined against one, there was a scene, all the same. It was somehow imperative.

"I am unworthy of you," he began. "Had I been worthy, I should not have released you from your engagement. I know what I am talking about. I can't bear to talk of such things. We had better leave it."

-244-

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Howards End
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page *
  • Chapter I 3
  • Chapter II 6
  • Chapter III 13
  • Chapter IV 23
  • Chapter V 31
  • Chapter VI 45
  • Chapter VII 56
  • Chapter VIII 64
  • Chapter IX 73
  • Chapter X 79
  • Chapter XI 87
  • Chapter XII 102
  • Chapter XIII 107
  • Chapter XIV 115
  • Chapter XV 125
  • Chapter XVI 137
  • Chapter XVII 149
  • Chapter XVIII 157
  • Chapter XIX 167
  • Chapter XX 176
  • Chapter XXI 184
  • Chapter XXII 186
  • Chapter XXIII 193
  • Chapter XXIV 202
  • Chapter XXV 207
  • Chapter XXVI 217
  • Chapter XXVII 233
  • Chapter XXVIII 240
  • Chapter XXIX 244
  • Chapter XXX 250
  • Chapter XXXI 257
  • Chapter XXXII 262
  • Chapter XXXIII 266
  • Chapter XXXIV 276
  • Chapter XXXV 285
  • Chapter XXXVI 289
  • Chapter XXXVII 292
  • Chapter XXXVIII 303
  • Chapter Xxxix 309
  • Chapter XL 311
  • Chapter XLI 315
  • Chapter XLII 325
  • Chapter XLIII 329
  • Chapter XLIV 335
  • About the Author *
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